tv Squawk Alley CNBC February 19, 2016 11:00am-12:01pm EST
happy friday and welcome to squawk alley. working on her fourth hour of television. >> it's friday luckily. >> it is friday. first up today tired of shelling out hundreds of dollars a year to rent that cable box? federal regulators seeking to increase competition and choice. voting to adopt a proposal that will let people swap out those boxes for cheaper apps for companies like google. it's good to have you back. good morning to you. >> good morning. >> party lines really didn't surprise anybody. but what was the remedy in your view. the descenting view. >> it's not to introduce a number of boxes into consumers
homes. and get rid of the box entirely and let an app convert any tablet or laptop or smartphone into a navigation device. that's the future to me. >> right now though, the situation at home is clunky, it's cumbersome. your view it seems is hey this problem is solving itself. this will take three years to actually hash it out. i don't like having the cable box and the apple tv box and the amazon fire tv stick and all of this stuff under there. i want one of those manufacturers to compete to put it all in one great interface. what's wrong with that? >> a couple of things is first of all we take a number of years to come to fruition. essentially they delegated this issue. the likelyhood that they're going to come to a consensus is low. >> didn't the fcc shoot this down five or six years ago in
2010. then we have it now. >> the industry has really evolved greatly since then. there was no such thing as the google chromecast or the amazon fire tv stick. three years from now the industry is going to be very, very different so i would rather go down an app based environment as opposed to doubling down on yesterday's technology. >> with just the cost argument though, commissioner, can't you accept that a consumer spending over $200 a year on a box is a little bit excessive given that there's still paying for the service itself. >> both as a commissioner and a paid tv consumer and that's why i think apps are the way of the future. an app costs between 0 and $5. this new generation of bosses is going to be introduced into people's homes and layer an additional 100 or 200 people's
bills. we need app technology that's more efficient for consumers. >> the other side, seem to frame the issue. for everybody to use. it wasn't the result of years of innovation and capital expenditure. i just wonder if any of this is a disincentive to create something new down the road. >> it's important to remember the state that we're in is entirely due to federal regulation. in 1996, congress told the fcc to set up a regulatory system for the boxes and the reason why the marketplace is not as competitive as it could be is because the fcc is highly regulated the set top marketplace and unsurprisingly that regulation has failed. i would much rather have a market based approach to allow companies to experiment through using apps so that we don't end up funneling all of these consumers through this
technology that doesn't reflect the way that people younger people access video. >> so you don't understand correctly your opposition is to the method involved that the fcc is going through. not the end. do you think that manufactures like apple and like a google. like tivo that does the new cable card should be able to really create the equivalent and you can have like 4-k. not having to worry about streaming quality, et cetera. do you believe there should be an environment where the outside manufacturer versus the freedom to create that. >> my own goal is to get rid of the box entirely. most consumers are there. so while in theory it might sound great to be able to say we'll introduce more manufacturers into the marketplace and have even more to compete ultimately i don't think that's where the video
environment is morphing. secondly, even if that would be a good thing, all of these people have to get together and reach a consensus. this is going to be like the state department saying we're going to have middle east peace and we'll come up with a solution. it's very difficult to see with any confidence how that's going to happen in the near term and that's why i think it's going to micromanage the marketplace. >> we're going to see what the public comments bring. >> thanks again. fcc commissioner. we do have some breaking news. imf executive board to survey second term as managing director. >> meantime to the high stakes standoff between apple and the fbi. the deadline has been extended. they have until the 26th of february to respond to that
encryption breaking technology. joining us on the phone is apple's senior director of information security. now vp and chief security officer with code 42. rick, it's good to talk to you. good morning. >> good morning. thanks for having me. >> along with the legal debate here is a technological debate about what is feasible if the court were to demand a certain remedy that could isolate the specifics of this case. >> can you talk about what can be done in your view at apple. >> we look at the apple keys. any time a company has to slide in the back door it basically means that all the best hackers in the world are going to know that and they're going to go pursue that. it was that they don't have the current capability. but right now that simply does
not exist. >> there seems to be confusion over whether this capability existed in the past and past operating systems and you were at apple until 2014. i'm wondering if you can set the record state on this issue. >> so did not exist for prior ios operating systems. did not exist in prior models of the iphone. >> when you look at the current ones they have today there's many, many versions past that. so i think that it increased their security postjurors within the software and it's more and more difficult to do that and then it ends up into the discussion about introducing back doors for encryption. >> is part of the problem that the government publicly requested this work around? this hack, in effect.
there were some reporting that apple had wanted them to request this under seal. now that it's open that apple is being pushed to do this, apple is publicly resisting. how much of this has to do with the precedent, you think, not just in the u.s. for other cases that might come up but also internationally so that other governments don't come asking apple to hack various pieces of software meant to keep users secure? >> yeah, you bring up a very good point. the way i see that is if the case exists then apple or any company for that matter opens themselves up to orders from every federal, state and law enforcement agency. once the capability is bill many can come after them and compel them this to the do this. they could end up with hundreds if not thousands of requests. >> do you think that sit right
for any company to create a technology that is a black box in some ways? we talk about snapchat which is the messaging platform where as a user you think that your messages spontaneously come bust but in a court of law with a subpoena you can still retrieve the messages. do you they technology should be retrievable with a court order? >> i think some technologies should and there's hacks and work arounds for applications like snapchat but i think that you introduce four technologies. so you consider having a phone something that's core to our society and if you have a core technology and you are forced to introduce the known back door for a hack. that is the weakness of all things internet. >> this would essentially reduce
digital security to physical security, if law enforcement gets their hands on something and they have a warrant to search it, it's normally pretty straightforward unless it's an unbreakable sale. they would still have to get their hands physically on the phone. have it in their possession to use the sort of software we're talking about, right? so it's reducing digital security to the same limits as physical security. but there are still limits. >> yeah. that's a really great point. if you take a look at a security program where you're trying to secure it, it all starts really with a physical layer, right? that's why companies put their servers and machines and data centers, right? so ensure that nobody can get physical access. if a hacker or somebody can get access to hardware they have the absolute best chance and likelihood of being able to break into it.
>> one last question. i hate to ask you to predict but is it your view that there is a work around here? some way to thread this needle? or is this -- the security dynamics mean that you think this will probably go all the way to the ultimate court? >> i believe that the security dynamics for this will take it to the ultimate court. it is a core fundamental issue that people want their data secured and we don want to be introducing capabilities that we can across the entire internet. >> i appreciate your insight on that. an angle we're all trying to get our arms around. thank you very much. code 42. formerly of apple. i was going to say i guess nothing to stop apple from putting a self-destruct feature in the phone to physically blow it up in all else fails. >> mission impossible. >> meanwhile the markets are still in negative territory.
the dow is down about 7 period 5 points. they've been that way throughout the morning. it's up ever so slightly. but major averages still on track for the best weekly gain of the year. thanks to a strong dollar and stock is down 3.5%. it also expects another challenging year ahead. nordstrom falling after missing earnings and revenue. heavily discounting and unseasonably warm weather. and it's going to be a tough day for the retail sector at large. >> front page headline on the wall street journal and last year's debut below the price and we'll talk about that. and two years ago today facebook bought whatsapp and then yahoo!
moving closer to a possible sell. sarah will tell us next when squawk alley continues in a moment. ♪ there's a lot of places you never want to see "$7.95." [ beep ] but you'll be glad to see it here. fidelity -- where smarter investors will always be. if only the signs were as obvious when you trade. fidelity's active trader pro can help you find smarter entry and exit points and can help protect your potential profits. fidelity -- where smarter investors will always be.
partner and blue run and it's not every day this topic has the front page treatment at the wall street journal. why do you think we should be focussing on what the ideal market is telling us about the market more broadly? >> i think it's another cycle. you know? we're obviously in a new news cycle and it's a negative news cycle and it makes sense they would put it on the front page. >> what does this mean for companies trying to issue more stock because they went public and they have very small float for private companies that are considering a public offering at some time? is the market just completely chilled or are there still discussions going on behind the scenes? >> well, i'm an early stage investor so i always have to take a long-term view. so i don't really ghetto cussed on the short-term market ups and downs. in this case a down. clearly access to capital could be an issue for those companies
that are thinly capitalized but really i think the standard for going public has been seasonably held over the last four or five years but there's ample cash in most of those companies. >> tell us about the environment in silicon valley right now. from commercial real estate to the mind set of early stage investors. the sort of valuations that they expect and demand. how much of a shift do you see taking place over the last weeks and months as the market has shifted. >> that's what is really interesting and different about this place. it's the best environment to invest in when it comes out of the market and you actually hit on it. one of our bigger limiters is real estate. it starts to cost a lot of money to start a company here. too much. now you start to see things get more reasonable. to start a company it's easier. it's also a lot easier to recruit. in the past when you're in a more heady market it's very difficult to keep people and recruit new people.
particularly when you're competing with a facebook or a google but now suddenly, even people working at google are look around and thinking maybe my prospects are better off. so ironically in this environment it's actually the best time to start companies and some of my best companies were actually started in troughs. >> interesting because the big companies would argue it's a good time for them. all the people in the companies that are facing series a where your equity comp is very questionable now. maybe it's better to go to a larger safer firm with more liquidity. why is that wrong? >> you know, if you are somebody that's worried about safety, i don't think you should go into a start up. if you're looking to make a difference. if you're looking to see, have an impact but also have an impact on your own balance overtime. i think you're willing to take that risk and that's the point. the people who should take the risk don't go away in the valley. the people that shouldn't take the risk do go away.
so those people that are timid or risk adverse for whatever reason and they would normally avert to a bigger company, i encourage them to go there. i was with paypal, all of those companies were started in difficult times and that's when you really find the extremely smart driven people. >> we got to a point, john, not even a year ago where engineers were hiring agents to find them jobs and companies were assigning ten year leases because they were worried that they wouldn't be able to find corporate real estate. are you seeing froth across the board settle out? or do you think that there's still some pockets where there should be corrections and some behaviors should be corrected? >> i try to keep it real. i don't really get caught up in the buzz cycle of things. i haven't seen that many things. i will say to you that real estate is a lot more reasonable.
and that's a big limiter. just because we're a small place. also salaries have come down. it's definitely easy to recruit people today. it's much easier to build a company today. >> well, perhaps that is a good sign. at least for now and for those that are trying to hire we appreciate your time this morning. >> thanks for having me. >> and up next, it's kind of hard to believe but it's been two years since book bought what's app for over $20 billion. how far both companies have come when it comes to users, when it comes to market cap when we come right back.
and today the company has more than a billion monthly hackers. and the stock is up more than 50% in that time. it probably doesn't hurt that zuckerberg picked a winner. company with potential to grow to the billion user scale he was thinking of. not twitter but we'll see if they can monetize it. >> that deal started on the private side. if they're worth $20 billion then what is my company worth if we have a quarter of the users. >> you wouldn't argue it's anywhere near as good of a purchase as snapchat. >> as instagram. >> it remains to be seen. arguably that was the last billion scale start up available that could have threatened facebook's dominance. i'll also point out that i was wrong when i picked that purchase as the peak of valuations for consumer tech. went a little bit further than that.
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the supreme court's scalia will have president and mrs. obama come to pay their respects. >> pope francis says donald trump was not christian was not a personal attack. it was simply an affirmation of the pope's belief that migrants should be helped rather than shut off behind walls. >> kim jong un attended a ceremony and bestowed awards upon scientists and technicians that contributed to the launch of a new satellite. and harper letha wrote "to kill a mockingbird" has died according to her publisher harper collins. 25 years ago the sequel was also published. she was 89. that's your cnbc news update at this hour. let's get back to squawk alley. >> europe is closing for the final time of the week.
simon back here looking at a lot of red. >> we have deepened the losses heading into the close there at europe. it just takes the edge off of what could be a good week. you have a look at where we traded for the week overall. the gain is about 4% for european stock 600 which means that for the year they're now down about 11%. still a gain of 4% overall. and it's what is happening in brussels. u.k. prime minister david cameron is struggling to do a deal to renegotiate the united kingdom's membership of the eu. the normal business of the summit with 28 leaders has been suspended. what you see here is him going to a series of bilateral meetings to try to remove critical snags to him get a deal. this is very important. he needs to go back to the u.k. to argue that the u.k. should stay within the european union
in advance of a referendum he promised this summer. it's a distinct possibility that they could lead the european union. and that's a lot of assets related to the u.k. not least the pound sterling. >> the drum beat is across the euro zone, it continues toward the european central bank which means that the sovereign debt continues to rally on the belief that mario draghi will bring out the bazooka and it just continues to fall. now for the fifth straight week people make money from the price going in the opposite direction. earlier in the week some of the debt was moving in the wrong direction. moving against that. but now they joined in that march as you can see. meantime what is interesting is that the banks today have started falling again. the italian banks. the expectations that the ecb is going to go deeper into negative
territory. one of them raise the idea of that and that would take the pressure off the banks models. these guys are in negative territory. on what was otherwise a great week. that is to 2% if you average it out. back to you. >> a busy weekend ahead. thank you very much. joining us from the nation's capitol is kara swisher. good morning to you. happy friday. >> thank you. >> i have been waiting all week to get your take on apple versus fbi. has it surprised you and where do you think it's all headed? >> no. i think apple has been firm on this for a long time. it should come as no surprise to the fbi. tim cook has been outspoken about this. he didn't say anything when the presidential candidates were discussing the issue but he's been strong on the issue for a long time and now a lot of silicon valley is backing him. it's not a surprise. >> would you characterize tech's response at large as tepid,
robust. and different things. >> his has been robust. and leonard was quite firm. it was bold. it took a lot. people and investors and this is a really big one. google is not as strong and backed him and back and forth in the government and technology and it's so important for everybody. >> i wonder if you think this is going to be a defining moment because of the way they're coming out. and facebook and twitter more explicitly backing apple. google a little bit more nuisanced saying there could be some problematic issues here. is this going to be the issue that crystallizes silicon valley's message. not just on encryption but about
security and government involvement. >> i think so. it has been a moment. if you go back even last year. it's just come to a head because of the court ruling that is particular -- it's in a case that's very nigh profile. they deal with this on a daily basis. all of these companies and requests and how they come in and as we get more and more dependent on these devices and they become more secure, you're going to see this over and over and over again and the question is how are they going to come to terms with each other and there's some legislation being considered to force them to do it. i don't think that's where it's going to go. but i think these tech companies have to stick to this area of privacy and consumers because they feel the opposite side is worse. letting people in is a problem. >> there's obviously been some hostility between silicon valley and washington on issues of this
type and this is a very unique one and i'm wondering if you think this is the beginning for getting court orders and subpoenas for certain things and the beginning of a slope where they say no, sorry we're not cooperating. can they keep doing that? >> no, they have been cooperative a lot of ways. if they come in on a legal manner can they even do them? this is a device issue and a software issue but they have been cooperating on a lot of stuff. more than a lot of people would like actually. >> this is the beginning of them refusing to cooperate. >> not on legally valid requests. they'll continue to do that. this was a particular case about a particular thing. and they cooperate too much. they'll continue to cooperate on the stuff that they feel is within the law and this is something they're going to fight.
>> next up, yahoo! this independent alternative saying that the outgoing calls. what should we know. >> information at creating the room where they have the data room and things like that. >> they have to have this independent committee doing this. it's a cooperative progress. it's apparent when the earnings release came out and it had two different messages that they're going to sell the company and it's just an indication that the board will be handling this and the ceo is reluctant to sell. i have heard that from every single buyer that's looked at this and tried to reach out and they keep getting sort of the strong arm. and i think they'll start to engage in the process. there's about 30 requests and
interests and probably not all of them are valid and they'll sort through those and then they'll move through to a possibility. we'll see. >> aren't there red flags? it's clear that the ceo and the board aren't on the same page? if you're a company looking to make an acquisition of all or part of yahoo!. got something wrong with it and they want you to take it without necessarily doing a full inspection. if everybody is not on the same page there's a lot of ways you can go wrong. >> it's more than that. most of the people i talk to are focussing in on the core business which is deeply troubled. they don't want to pay too much and you remember that and i think they're direct. the business is a falling knife so the board has been telling them we're not going to take a lower price. it will be worth more next year but it could be worth half as much next year and this board is very vulnerable from a legal point of view. they're very vulnerable. the lawsuits are going to fly
and jeff smith is preparing his proxy fight so just get ready for stuff that yahoo! shouldn't be focussing on. they should be focussing on product innovation and they're not able to. >> speaking of the product. we saw the right sizing this week. how is that. >> they should have cut a long time. and it's disingenuous. if they had done it close to the beginning of their ten year this would have been a different story and would have been able to do that. they're going to do the amount they said. and a lot of people in sales. a ton of people in the sales area. and the media area which has been widely reported and nothing in the certain area surge is not being touched. emerging products.
mobile is not being touched. >> how many people do they need to run this company. i know you're not mckenzie. >> i think mark was right. half of what it had. it's cutting 1500 people and brings it down to 9,000 a think. probably a lot less. when it gets sold if it gets sold to a verizon you'll see a massive consolidation. >> so you think the sale is a when and not an if. >> no, i don't know. i think that this is a botched sale the way most things are botched at yahoo!. people that are trying to buy this company are enormously frustrated and communicating that to me and other reporters. it's a really difficult process and maybe they'll get it together and it will go forward but we'll see. >> finally, kara, what a week you guys had at code media. we have been playing the sound as much as we possibly could.
what were you big takeaways? >> well, the future of media is still very confusing. i love this conference because you start to realize how difficult it is to figure out what's happening next and i think we heard from a lot of different people in different part of the media like john skipper from espn talking about the slow down in the cable business. we heard about the possibility of subscriptions at vivo. i had a really great interview with joanna that's the editor of cosmopolitan magazine. she just joined the board of snapchat. we had an amazing discussion with someone from the fox networks about where advertising is going and none of it is pretty. so it was super confusing but in a good way. it was very substantive to think about what works and what doesn't work. >> and interesting to see that the future of media includes a fax machine. >> fax machine. >> that was a great quote.
what is he going to do? that guy had just got him after that sony thing. that was a funny joke but he has to manage in a very differ environment so that was a great interview also. it was a really interesting evening and then, you know, i think it was -- a lot of people came away with a question of where -- especially advertising is going and whether you have to do subscriptions or something else. >> my favorite is with shane smith. i can't say it all the time myself. he was great. he was talking about trying to create a television network and why vice needs to move into that area although he's creating a different kind with spike jones the director. it was fascinating. >> yeah. definitely a lot of people watching what he's doing and what you're doing. we can't wait for later in the summer too. >> it's going to be great.
get ready. get ready. i'm telling you. you'll find out monday. >> good, good. >> kara swisher of re code. >> a quick news alert. seema is back with that at hq. >> hey, kayla. s&p has removed berkshire hathaway from credit watch negative saying the outlook is now stable. keep in mind they were on credit watch negative after berkshire announced their acquisition but s&p now concluded that this deal will not adversity impact berkshire's rating. s&p mentioned that they're now analyzing as a conglomerant and that's due to the series of acquisitions over the past couple of years. >> thank you. coming up, ben may have gotten his first big break but rick what are you watching today? >> that two year note. it's up five basis points today and here's the interesting other end of the curve. tens are unchanged and we're
aggressive and buy the energy names. should you follow that lead? are there any bargains there that you should add now to their shopping list. that and more coming up at the top of the hour. >> let's get over to the cme group. >> thanks kayla. >> listen when i look at the yield curve trades i'm a speck tick. i was a skept tick quite an hour ago. we just don't know the signals. it's something talked about in many exchanges. and a market junkie, a student of the markets. markets really show you things in real time. just nuisanced little things. as i was releasing the 8:30 cpi this morning and watching how little if any impact lasted on
the long end. >> it most likely had to do with fed cycles but the long end seems to have really gravitated on weak growth. when the hot cpi numbers came out whether you're looking at 10s minus 2s, 30s minus 5s. it's rather dramatic. the short end gave us all the yield gains. that's where all the selling was and the long end is oblivious. i think that's important to see what makes the market move and get heads of investors and what exactly motivates them to do the buys themselves. now on another note in today's wall street journal section c front page negative rates and if
you look at the caption i'll take it out the whole sentence. he finishes sub zero rates. and i don't think it's silver bullets on negative rates. it's more like thumbs down on main street. i really do. i've been talking about this a long way back even more negative rates. just thow little is known or snood in any country's main street. as a matter of fact the article goes on to say these aren't the only articles on negative rates. the article goes a long way to say that even those involved in parliament and involved in the group don't really understand negative rates. and just because you don't understand doesn't mean that it isn't a good thing. i don't understand how it couldn't be a good thing. since japan went there a little
over a week ago it doesn't seem like their markets are impressed but the moral of the story is once again when there's such concentrated power in the marketplace they might not be aware of it. until services at banks and all the other issues that have to be made up because of banks and negative rates are in a mode where a lot of the profit centers are not only not profitable but they're not centers anymore. they're gone. john fort, back to you. >> have a great weekend. we talk about apple's fight over encryption and tlak of response from other big tech companies. while our next guest is speaking out in support of apple and he's going to tell us why in just a moment. man 1: [ gasps ]
man 2: should i be worried? man 1: you are the ceo. it's not just security. it's defense. bae systems. >> twitter and facebook are breaking their silence. jack dorsey tweeting we stand with tim cook and apple and thank him for his leadership and facebook says the governments demands would create a chilling precedent. he is the ceo of the data security software company behind the zip file system. and, i mean, your whole business is security and encryption. what would you do if the government came to you and said we want you to build a product that breaks your security. >> let's break down the issue
just a little bit because i think this is bigger than apple. it's ludicrous. the repercussions of this go way beyond a technology question or an economy question. because the first to exploit this pickable lock is going to be isis and terrorists. it's going to weaken security. we're not changing our approach. we provide encryption to the largest enterprises in the world. we're having more conversations today than before and it's actually the only way to solve the problem. >> what do you say to those that say some locks need to be
picked. how do you deal with that situation if they don't have the capability to pick a lock that might be needed to be picked to save lives. >> that's actually the wrong question. you -- a pickable lock is -- the fbi is not asking to get into one terrorist phone, right? they're asking to be able to get into our lives, our businesses, our banks and the answer is absolutely no. a back door into these systems is going to make us weaker and not stronger. >> would the conversation be any different? and we asked this a couple of times this week if the manufacturer in question was not american. >> whatever this encryption takes in the u.s. is going to have no jurisdiction between our country anyway. and if you outlaw guns, only
outlaws will have guns. it's the same with encryption and beyond our boarders it's totally out of our control. >> why does this have to be a master key. we're talking about one phone that belonged to a company and then a person who is now dead. why can't there be technologically a solution that deals with this one specific instance and not just a master key that just is a blanket solution to everything. >> so that's a great question. apple goes to great lengths to protect the security of the consumer. apple does not have access to the fingerprint or the code on your iphone or mine so to think that they can expose one key that's not the way it works. they would have to actually put a back door into the os and if that information is available for one use it's available for every use on that os.
>> quite an important distinction. you made your stand clear. thanks for joining us. >> thank you. >> when we come back, ben bernanke in primetime. more on that in a moment. [ beep ] but you'll be glad to see it here. fidelity -- where smarter investors will always be. if only the signs were as obvious when you trade. fidelity's active trader pro can help you find smarter entry and exit points and can help protect your potential profits. fidelity -- where smarter investors will always be.
of the day. former fed chair ben bernanke making a cameo on the big bank theory on cbs. he's an extra along with his wife in the background of one scene. apparently they're big fan of the show. people were trying to figure this out this morning. just from the picture and then teller of pen and teller was on set and tweeted a picture of the three of them hanging out. >> it's a perfect little easter egg. it's an active fed chair. >> ben bernanke showing his by accepts. he financing his mortgage. doing it all. >> it's about the correlation between oil and stocks and how it actually goes back a lot farther than we think. it's worth a good read if you have some time today. finally 30 second bfrs the top of the hour, it has rebounded a bit on the current contract and as a result stocks are off their
lows down 45. >> talk about oil and stocks decoupling. that was just a day long phenomenon. >> we're a long way from 1812 which both are happy about. >> what a test that was. >> good weekend guys and a good week to everybody out there. simon is going to take over the half. >> and welcome to the halftime report. i'm in for scott. let's meet today's starting line-up. stephanie link, josh brown, and john. this is what our game plan looks like this lunchtime. retail rack. nordstrom the latest retailer to disappoint the street. we're shopping for bargains amid that sell off and weathering the storm in energy. our call of the day is a hand full of buy ratings on oil stocks. that debate is also ahead. but first clearly we're